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Suriname: SBB discusses timber exports with President Santokhi

The management of the Forest Management and Forest Supervision Foundation (SBB) discussed the wood sales and exports with the head of state during a follow-up meeting with President Chan Santokhi. The follow-up meeting was yesterday as part of the regular instructional meetings that the president has with the leadership of the various state-owned companies. During these meetings, the policy that the government wishes to implement through these companies is discussed, while the head of state is also informed about the state of affairs with the para-states.

Vice President Ronnie Brunswijk and Minister Diana Pokie of Land Policy and Forest Management also sat during the meeting. SBB director Stanley Betterson says that the position of the SBB as an organization has been examined. The parties also considered the direction of the SBB, while there was a presentation on the strategic planning for the coming period.

Two of the points specifically discussed are the control of timber sales and timber exports. “It has turned out that a lot of things are not going the way they should, causing the state to lose revenue,” said Betterson. This has been examined in detail and the intention is to let go of policy on this piece, so that loss of income becomes a thing of the past.

The SBB director added that there are illegal situations. It must be examined how to bring these within the legal sphere. President Santokhi had already indicated at an earlier meeting in January that a lot is going wrong with the export of round wood. The annual reports of the SBB show that US $ 130 million in revenue disappears on an annual basis.

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